In the first session of Inside the DM Talk, David Shum (Community Lead Coach, Sports Therapist) and Melvin Wong (Former Team SG Athlete SEAG 2015) shared about ways to maintain fitness during this strange time. Through a conversational talk show style of hosting coupled with some light and easy banter, the two men shared not only practical advice but also feeling a lack of motivation due to the covid-19 situation and its measures.
However, one of the main takeaways of the talk is that athletes adapt and they have shared ways in which they have worked around the situation and feeling unmotivated. Here are some of the key pointers from the talk.
During this period, it is normal and common to feel unmotivated or sluggish.
With new measures and the general negativity during this period, it is normal to feel like not wanting to run, especially since there are no races during this period. What’s important is to upkeep your fitness by doing more beyond running such as core exercises, using a medicine ball, resistance bands and more. Remember that you are not alone and on tough days, you can just do the bare minimum- a lousy run is better than no run at all. Be kind to yourself during this period.
Incorporate home-based exercises into your routine.
A good number of us are working or studying from home, spending a long amount of time sitting a day. It is good to include strength and mobility based exercises at home, whether it’s after a long day of work or even during midday. Many people tend to neglect stretching during the time you can run and it would be good as part of your fitness routine. This is a good time to also focus on areas you might have neglected such as single leg mobility exercises.
Find new and creative ways to keep running exciting for you.
Whether it’s finding a new place to do your interval training such as a nearby hill or running in more isolated areas like an industrial park, there are always ways to revitalize running in your neighbourhood. Who knows, this might be a good chance for you to learn more about your neighbourhood and discover paths you have not run before.
It’s okay to indulge in fast food and sweet desserts like cheesecake and tiramisu but do so in moderation.
Melvin enjoys the occasional Mcdonalds while David listed cheesecake and tiramisu when a topic about fast food came up. After all, training is not easy and it is acceptable to treat yourself if you do feel like it. The key word Melvin emphasized is “moderation”.
So, should runners keep up their intensity or should they scale down?
David and Melvin think maintaining fitness is key right now compared to training to be competition-ready. The straightforward answer will be there are no races in sight for the next 3-4 months, hence trying to achieve a competition-ready level now will mean holding that peak over an extended period of time - which will be very difficult even for the professionals. Putting yourself in a race-specific training intensity will mean a higher load and stress on the body, which inevitably leads to injury and/or mental fatigue.
Always remember that athletes can adapt, whether it be to the weather, new training routines and new intensities and whatever else. Melvin shared Coach Tinman’s advice of “Keeping the ball rolling” and to keep the momentum going, even if we have to start from ground zero. Stay tuned to the next session for more details on how exactly to cater your routine to be race-ready when the races come back.
For more detailed sharing and personal anecdotes from David and Melvin, do join our Inside The DM Talk series running for the next three Thursdays. Covering important topics this circuit breaker period in a light conversational way, David and Melvin are sure to keep you comfortable and engaged. Find out about the next session here.